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Comment: a million in my birth year is $8M now (Score 1) 267

by peter303 (#46774005) Attached to: Survey: 56 Percent of US Developers Expect To Become Millionaires
We had a decade of high inflation in the 1970s that contribute almost half of the dollar depreciation since my birth. I think my 'birth million" would feel like a real million, i.e. a decent retirement at any age. A millionaire in all those silly 1960s sitcoms was a real millionaire! conversely my fathers coworkers felt OK if they retired with a $100K or two.

Comment: Re:The sad part here... (Score 1) 146

by fermion (#46773387) Attached to: Nokia Had a Production-Ready Web Tablet 13 Years Ago
This was not really an innovative product for the time. The Apple Newton had full network capability, for instance. I know I had it connected to the internet and think I had a basic web browser. When the internet was pushed to the public, there were a number of dedicated machines, or internet appliances, that were introduced to the market, most few have heard of because they were failures. WebTV was a big one, I only know how it worked because I had to visit a dealer to fix a bug on a website I was working on. there were others during the 2000 time frame, but mostly the technology was not there.

Comment: Re:No. (Score 1) 1085

by Valdrax (#46772825) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

The rights protected by the 2nd amendment are rights retained by the people and, in my opinion, are not subject to regulation by states under their powers.

In your opinion. I clearly disagree, finding more agreement with Breyer's dissent in McDonald v. Chicago (2010) that incorporation under the 14th was inappropriate because it is not a fundamental, individual right.

The Second is the only Amendment in the Bill of Rights that explicitly explains the intent behind the right enumerated there -- that the ownership of firearms is intended for the establishment of well functioning militias. That means the right is limited and not fundamental, and the government should have a free hand to regulate so long as that purpose is not thwarted. To hold otherwise is to regulate the militia clause meaningless. I do not think any phrase in the Constitution should be treated so.

If you're implying that the 2nd amendment grants a power to the states then I'd like to understand what structure in the Constitution would give you the impression that anything in the Bill of Rights grants any power to a state.

Well, if you're going to completely disregard the Second, then you must at least look to the Tenth, which held that powers not reserved by the federal government belong to the States or to the people. Note that "the States" is capitalized as a formal term in the same way that "State" is in the Second and in the rest of the Constitution. Once again, this points to the explicit, focused intent of the Amendment to address state and local concerns.

Furthermore, its very clear from the rest of the Constitution that the founders intended the States to still have a large role in the life of their citizens. The structure of the Senate is the clearest expression of that intent, giving an entire house of the legislature over to (originally) state-appointed representatives, balanced between the states.

Comment: Apples simple GUI one of breakthroughs (Score 1) 146

by peter303 (#46772375) Attached to: Nokia Had a Production-Ready Web Tablet 13 Years Ago
Most of the previous tablet GUIs tried to cram the complexity of multiwindow destop on to a small tablet screen. Apple mainly enlarged the simpler, single-window phone GUI. Samsung is hawking side-by-side Android screens this year. But you really dont want to get all that much more complex than that.

Comment: Re:No. (Score 1) 1085

by Valdrax (#46770967) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

I say that is a completely different topic and I'm not sure why you brought it up other than to try to be a smart-ass. What you mentioned is not undermining the constitution, and as such, is completely off-topic.

Yes, it is. Any misinterpretation of the constitution is an undermining of its intent and effect, regardless of whether that results in a situation you like or not, and the pure individual right interpretation of the Second Amendment undermines states' rights.

A militia was a force of the proletariat. Every man that was able to take up arms was expected to do so. Therefor, the common man was considered militia and did *not* need to join the army nor any other organization to be considered such.

Yes, it was made up of the people, but the whole phrase "well-regulated" is not mere puffery. It means a militia in proper and working order, and it explicitly referenced as "being necessary to the security of a free State." The governments of the states have long been held to have the right to regulate arms within that context, and the federal government has the right to regulate firearms that do not have a purpose in a militia. (See US v. Miller (1939) on regulation of sawed-off shotguns.)

Anything not specifically outlawed by the constitution or the state is defaulted to being a right. Therefor, yes, you would have the right to own a gun even if the 2nd amendment didn't exist.

Unless a state passed a law saying that you didn't, by your own statement.

Comment: Re:No. (Score 1) 1085

by Valdrax (#46770779) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

You want to use the phrase "well-regulated militia" as a way of allowing the national government to regulate firearms.

Actually, I view the Second Amendment as a state's right and support the right of the states to regulate arms, seeing at the concept of a militia is directly tied to the state power and not individual power. If a state wants to ban handguns and keep only a professional militia (e.g. the National Guard), that should be their right.

Comment: Re:Militia, then vs now (Score 1) 1085

by Valdrax (#46770731) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment

Larger "ordnance" is not illegal to own or use in the US. One may privately own fighter jets, tanks, cannons, rocket launchers, etc. While there are some restirtions they are hardly banned, and never have been. So what is your point?

Title II weapons are heavily regulated in ways that handguns cannot be, under current standards. The federal government as the power to regulate them -- even the power to outright ban them. The fact that they have not exercised that power is no proof that they don't. Even DC v. Heller (2008), the case that nailed down the notion that firearm ownership was an individual right, upheld the notion that it only applies to certain types of weapons (referring to US v. Miller (1939).

And that's my point. A strict reading of the Second Amendment in no way forbids the government from preventing private citizens from having ordnance. It only guarantees the right to bear arms, not ordnance.

Comment: Re:All I can say to that is... (Score 2) 49

When I converted a family member from MS Office to Pages years ago it was a struggle. The expectation was that there was only one way for a such an application to work, and that was defined by MS Office. Everything that was different was wrong, everything that missing was a glare. I get that. Most people in the US at least were trained on MS Office and they don't know anything different. OTOH, I got through the struggles, and Pages did the job as well as anything.

I have seen a similar situations with open textbooks. I have seen lately several that have clearly used MS Word. The layout and formulas are awful. I do technical work in LaTex. Obviously, because these authors have never used anything else but MS Office, and when all one has it a hammer everything is a nail, they just assumed that MS Word is the best thing to in which to write a book.

As an aside, I did write a short, 60 pagish, book back in the late 90's. I specifically chose because it had some features at the time that made putting together such a thing very easy. Also, 10 years ago, was much better at open old MS Word files than MS Word. Ms Word is still the absolute best way to right a Memo. MS Excel is still the best spreadsheet, but it is no longer so good that it is the only choice for many projects. MS Powerpoint is the worst presentation creator that I have used., Libreoffice is better, and Keynote used to be way better before Apple shoehorned it into the iPad and made that the official version.

MS Ofiice is the defacto format for file transfer though, and because MS is horrible at managing such a thing is becoming increasingly difficult to see such files with an MS tool.

Comment: Re:Easy Militia States (Score 1) 1085

by fermion (#46769649) Attached to: Retired SCOTUS Justice Wants To 'Fix' the Second Amendment
A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed.

There is certainly a fantasy that militias are unregulated and are there to defend the local population against the government, but much like Mitt Romney and the South, the anti-federalists lost. Get over it. The amendment says 'well regulated'. As far as militias go, it did have a pretty good definition, I think it was in the Virginia charter or some other document relating to incorporation. Therefore if we did have militias, the people would have to be recorded, and there would have to be further regulation to insure that order was maintained.

Consistent with this fantasy, it would theoretically be perfectly legal for these groups to attack federal officials as was done in Waco and currently done in Nevada where a criminal has groups of militias defending his right to be a criminal. This really hurts no one because, as in Waco, if we had someone who was as forceful as Janet Reno, the feds would just go in and kill everyone and be done with. Which is really the issue here. Superior forces win. And as long as the militia can't own working tanks, or rocket propelled grenades, or tactical nuclear weapons, it is unlikely that a 'militia' is going to be anything but hamburger.,

Comment: previous art (Score 1) 122

by fermion (#46769391) Attached to: Bill Gates Patents Detecting, Responding To "Glassholes"
This device detects a flash and then overcomes the image with and LED. I don't know if it every made it to market,but this is the only way I can think of to detect a camera. Detect the infrared from the active sensor, and flash a high intensity LED back. I assume that the camera using the Google Glasses uses such an active sensor.

Comment: Re:Are you kidding (Score 1) 638

by bill_mcgonigle (#46768487) Attached to: Study Finds US Is an Oligarchy, Not a Democracy

I have no interests in controlling women's reproductive lives, but as a Catholic I believe life begins at conception, and abortion is murder.

I don't disagree with you, but what matters in public policy is actions, not sentiment.

The operative question is whether you believe society is better off by imprisoning mothers who get abortions.

It's possible to both believe it's murder and to believe that imprisonment/prosecution is not the correct response. Don't be fooled into the "insult/vengeance" paradigm that we're told by civil religions to be essential. I'm pretty sure you'll find the opposite recommendations in the Gospels.

And, BTW, this is why "the issue" cannot be resolved by our current system of governance - it's located directly at the insult/vengeance nexus. Until we can get past legislating revenge the "two sides" will never find any common ground.

"If I do not want others to quote me, I do not speak." -- Phil Wayne